I don’t have the most peaceful and graceful feelings or history with Father’s Day. Growing up as a fatherless kid did some messed up stuff to me, and forgetting Father’s Day easily became my favorite pastime as child. As an adult, who has learned, grew and healed my fatherless child wounds, I am poised to grow into a new woman with more grateful feelings for Father’s Day.

On this Father’s Day, I must first give thanks to my Father in Heaven, for His eternal love, grace and forgiveness. He has been my parent, teacher, protector, healer and all around best friend, since the day He blessed me into this world! Thank you Father!

I must then acknowledge and give thanks to my biological father, who without his contribution to my DNA, I would not be here nor, have grown into the amazing woman I consider myself to be today. It took us 24 years to build some remnants of a relationship, and though it’s still strained as ever, our love is more solid than anything. For that I am eternally grateful. Now that my father is sick and I know I won’t have him as long as I’d like or believe is fair, I am simply grateful to know I could restore our love, while both in the land of the living.

I always have and must continue to give the most gracious of love and thanks to my amazing momma, who was my father, teacher, provider and protector for all my days. She’s just awesome and I could never have enough days to say and demonstrate my heartfelt thanks to her, for being the mother and father, she never had, for my siblings and I.

My aunt Phyllis, (who I used to tell more often and have not done so in some time), is another father I must be grateful for. When my mom was too weak or lost, more often than not during my childhood, Aunt Phyl stepped up to help me. She gave me a lot of needed wisdom and support during my early years, and I don’t know who or what I’d be without her. She had her own children and grandchildren to care for, but she never forgot or denied her ability to love me and my siblings. For that, I am forever grateful! Thanks Aunt Phyllis!!

I must also salute my stepfather, who though is in prison, has shown more in-depth, sincerely genuine and heartfelt love with me, than my own father. He is a blessed soul, if I’ve ever known one, and I am forever grateful to him for loving me, despite all physical pressures and distance, attempting to keep him from doing so. Thank you Gary <3!!

I want to say Happy Father’s Day to all of the fathers, step fathers, mothers, aunties, uncles, grandmas, granddads and non-blood custodial and non-custodial parents holding it down for the future of tomorrow. As a momma and daddy to be, lol, I am so much more in tune with the saying, ‘it takes a village to raise a child.’ Children need all of the support, love and guidance they can get. And that’s a fact!

People ain’t perfect, as we’re all human. We’re often called to step into shoes, we don’t feel ready, obliged or willing to step into. Some answer that calling, while others don’t. In any regard, the world keeps turning and God makes a way for us beloved children, to get the love and care we need, one way or another.

So, contempt, sadness and even confusion aside, I’d like to pay homage to Father’s Day by simply saying thank you to every single person that stepped up, when you could have or even wanted to, step aside or down. We needed you and you were there! So, thank you!!

God bless all the pappies out there, traditional or not! S/o to the children of the future and those who nurture them into and through existence! A’se!